Bandusia’s fount, in clearness
O worthy of the wine, the flowers we vow!
To-morrow shall be thine
A kid, whose crescent brow
Is sprouting all for love and victory.
In vain: his warm red blood, so early stirr’d,
Thy gelid stream shall dye,
Child of the wanton herd.
Thee the fierce Sirian star, to madness fired,
Forbears to touch: sweet cool thy waters yield
To ox with ploughing tired,
And lazy sheep afield.
Thou too one day shalt win proud eminence
’Mid honour’d founts, while I the ilex sing
Crowning the cavern, whence
Thy babbling wavelets spring.
Our Hercules, they told us, Rome,
Had sought the laurel Death bestows:
Now Glory brings him conqueror home
From Spaniard foes.
Proud of her spouse, the imperial fair
Must thank the gods that shield from death;
His sister too:—let matrons wear
The suppliant wreath
For daughters and for sons restored:
Ye youths and damsels newly wed,
Let decent awe restrain each word
Best left unsaid.
This day, true holyday to me,
Shall banish care: I will not fear
Rude broils or bloody death to see,
While Caesar’s here.
Quick, boy, the chaplets and the nard,
And wine, that knew the Marsian war,
If roving Spartacus have spared
A single jar.
And bid Nesera come and trill,
Her bright locks bound with careless art:
If her rough porter cross your will,
Why then depart.
Soon palls the taste for noise and fray,
When hair is white and leaves are sere:
How had I fired in life’s warm May,
In Plancus’ year!
UXOR PAUPERIS IBYCI.
Wife of Ibycus the poor,
Let aged scandals have at length their bound:
Give your graceless doings o’er,
Ripe as you are for going underground.
You the maidens’ dance to lead,
And cast your gloom upon those beaming stars!
Daughter Pholoe may succeed,
But mother Chloris what she touches mars.
Young men’s homes your daughter storms,
Like Thyiad, madden’d by the cymbals’ beat:
Nothus’ love her bosom warms:
She gambols like a fawn with silver feet.
Yours should be the wool that grows
By fair Luceria, not the merry lute:
Flowers beseem not wither’d brows,
Nor wither’d lips with emptied wine-jars suit.
Full well had Danae been secured,
By oaken portals, and a brazen tower,
And savage watch-dogs, from the roving youth
That prowl at midnight’s hour:
But Jove and Venus mock’d with gay disdain
The jealous warder of that close stronghold:
The way, they knew, must soon be smooth and plain
When gods could change to gold.